These are very attractive cards and when I had them sitting out at the table AJ grabbed and read them for about half an hour. He is probably past most of the games but he had fun reading them including some of the myths and reality cards that were at the beginning of the deck.
The ring set up for the cards is very nice. You can pull out a card or flip them so the card you are working on is in front. They are easy enough to wipe off should they get messy. You can read quite a bit about them here and below is a snippet from that page.
The Carlito C. Caterpillar’s Sensory Math Teaching System is the outgrowth of years of research and development. It utilizes the natural way children learn.
Games and play are the learning media for young children. Early childhood development professionals note that young children are most open to learning when they play. Thus, we have created activities and games for parents to play with their children. The material is presented in 3stages, with a total of 20steps and 2 games in each step covering quantity, numeration, and operations.
The games are designed to build upon the knowledge young children already possess. Only when a child fully understands a concept, will you increase the complexity, such as reversing the roles of the players and designating the child as the leader.
If you focus on maintaining an environment of play, the child will experience the learning as an active participant rather than a passive spectator.
The website has some fun extras. You can print out certificates when your child finishes a level. They of course have a facebook page. Some of these games you have heard of elsewhere but what I like about this deck/book is that it is developmental, it is all in one place and they are 'kid friendly' in that they can take the cards themselves and use them. Many kids lose the love of math because it involves sitting at the table and doing worksheets. With this it is all about the games..and not just 'card games' that most people think of. It is using every day objects to teach the lesson. You could even keep these in the car with a Ziploc full of some of the manipulatives to have with you if you get stuck somewhere.
Even the very first game was something AJ and I could do now, even though he is 11. (Some of the games would be for younger.) It was Alike It or Not. It involves gathering objects that are alike and then having a child determine which is different. I decided to do an 'older' version.
These happened to be four items sitting in front of me. A cordless mouse, a flip phone, a cup and a pen. I have to tell you that my son is WAY more creative than I am. Here was his assessment. The phone and mouse are electronic. Three of them are silver. There are two things that they ALL have in common that he came up with. 1) They are all made of plastic and 2) They are all household items. I would have scratched my head to come up with one thing in common and that exercise took all of 60 seconds. I am not saying that I would necessarily purchase this for an older child but if you have varying math levels in the house you could certainly think about using it for the older. Even though we are above 'pre-math' it helps to go back to basics and see how the thinking skills are working.
Once again there is a cool contest courtesy of the folks at Propeller and you can win your set of these cards. You may enter up to four times. Please leave a comment HERE (not on FB) to be counted in the drawing. (I use random.org and just count up the number of comments and ask for a random number.) I'm going to run this until October 7, 2011.
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